Title: Does relationship marketing have a dark side? A theoretical perspective

Authors: Deepika; Shashank Vikram Pratap Singh; Mohinder Paul

Addresses: Acharya Narendra Dev College, University of Delhi, 110019, India ' Shri Ram College of Commerce, University of Delhi, 110007, India ' Ramanujan College, University of Delhi, 110019, India

Abstract: Few studies have identified that despite the benefits of adopting a relationship marketing strategy, there could be a dark side that reveals itself between business firms because of implementing a relationship marketing strategy. Past literature remains scrappy on this aspect. The other perspective tells that over time, a relationship may become boring. Apart from this time factor, another factor namely, opportunism, also played a significant role in manifesting the dark side variables. The present paper provides a conceptual framework on the variables of relationship marketing (trust and commitment) and the identified dark side of relationship marketing (such as vulnerability, complacency and suspicion). The authors argue that if at any point a partner has the opportunity to engage in opportunism, there appears a negative side of the relationship which overcomes the positive impact of the relationship marketing strategy, and most favourable factors like trust, slowly converts into the identified dark side variables.

Keywords: relationship marketing; dark side constructs; trust; commitment; opportunism.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBIR.2023.129372

International Journal of Business Innovation and Research, 2023 Vol.30 No.3, pp.389 - 406

Received: 11 Aug 2020
Accepted: 21 Jan 2021

Published online: 07 Mar 2023 *

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